Poetry Month 2016: David Giannini
[For those of you who may have wondered what happened to the April 18th post, the auto-post feature evidently conflicted with some kind of WordPress update and failed to post. It appears below. It was intended to be a companion to today’s poem by Janine Pommy Vega.] The Simple Day To start with, a feather in the air, no wind…a pebble for no reason rolling from a larger stone…petals into sun…and what with one thing and another, nightfall and a star, where are we, Pam, where we are? In the poetry of moments the curse of being mere, merely ourselves. * What Is Found 1.) What is found in poetry is only found there. 2.) What is found in poetry is only found there.Come stand with me by the stone wall and sense its rhythm, what has shifted across years of sun-moon, snow-rain, its span through meadow and earlier field gone to pine, popple, ash, black cherry, and birch. Walk awhile along its run—a few cracks, sure; but brother, just breathe and allow that, as with stones hefted from field and placed right, if what you write now lasts ahead, that’s the truth. * Thief Sometimes poetry breaks into the poet the way a thief re-enters a house, and without guilt returns all the loot (intact but of a different order), then leaves at least five windows open (only if hoping to gain favor with the owner). * Thinking of Janine Vega, 1942-2010 Something under the bones is calling. Branches were scraping gray heavy air winter dawn when an email from a friend told the death of a poet we knew, one near enough in age to be us. In need of keeping to a rhythm of things, I put out seed. A female Titmouse, spirit and appetite ahead of the others, landed on our deck rail just-after I set down Janine’s Barred Owl, let her book slip over the lip of a couch and he touching other poets’ books piled there, bright and darkstalked songs, momentarily quiet. Something under the bones is calling—the soul-sounds going on—Janine. [From Span of Thread] ~ Sharing these poems about poetry by David Giannini risks misrepresenting his work because his work is far more various, erudite, and layered than these alone can suggest. David has an inner Gertrude Stein, whose influence he has absorbed and transmuted and (in my opinion) improved, but he also has an inner Steven Wright—a dead-pan zaniness bordering on the surreal but without the pretension that mars so much surrealist writing. Read his book and you’ll see what I mean. From the publisher’s Web site [scroll down to see the book]: David Giannini’s most recently published collections of poetry include AZ TWO (Adastra Press), a “Featured Book” in the 2009 Massachusetts Poetry Festival; RIM/WAVE in 2012;, and 10 chapbooks in 2013-15 including INVERSE MIRROR, a collaboration with artist, Judith Koppel;. His work appears in national and international literary magazines and anthologies. Awards include: Massachusetts Artists Fellowship Awards; The Osa and Lee Mays Award For Poetry; an award for prosepoetry from the University of Florida; and a 2009 Finalist Award from the Naugatuck Review. He has been a gravedigger; beekeeper; taught at Williams College, The University of Massachusetts, and Berkshire Community College, as well as preschoolers and high school students, among others. Giannini was the Lead Rehabilitation Counselor for Compass Center, which he co-founded as the first rehabilitation clubhouse for severely and chronically mentally ill adults in the northwest corner of Connecticut. He lives among trees in Becket, Massachusetts with his wife, Pam.